CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

Royal Free calls for financial donations in ‘direct appeal to community’

Hospital tells its staff they are 'heroes' and urges public to support them

30 March, 2020 — By Tom Foot

The appeal was launched today (Monday)

THE Royal Free has made an appeal for financial donations for the first time during the coronavirus crisis with the launch of an ’emergency fund’.

Many staff at the Pond Street hospital in Hampstead are looking after patients with coronavirus while trying to maintain services to others who do not have COVID-19 but still desperately need hospital care.

The NHS trust’s charity said donations would be spent on care packages, “psychological support” and “physical respite spaces” for staff working “very long shifts”.  Much has been funded by government “but not everything”, a statement said.

“We are reaching out directly to the local community,” said Judy Dewinter, the Royal Free Charity’s chair of trustees. “We are asking your local NHS staff what they need and your response is going to make a real difference to their lives. Your donation will go directly to help them as they work under pressure and in the most challenging of circumstances.

“We have had children asking to donate their pocket money and offers of help from individuals and local businesses. We want the message to be loud and clear for staff at our hospitals: ‘You are our heroes and we will support you with whatever you need.’”

The New Journal has published stories detailing the pressure staff are working under and concerns about that resources are stretched to breaking point.

There are 10,000 NHS staff at Royal Free London hospitals – which include Barnet and Chase Farm as well as the Royal Free in Pond Street.  The Royal Free has followed the Whittington, which launched a similar scheme last week.

The Royal Free NHS trust Chairman Dominic Dodd said: “Every person on our team – from the doctors and nurses to the porters, cleaners and support staff, is playing a vital role in being there for others during this emergency. Please join our team effort by showing your appreciation, gratitude and solidarity for them at this very difficult time.”

To donate visit here https://www.royalfreecharity.org/

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